Reviews for Tuesday, October 27, 2009 (Part Two)
Title: Stereotypes Tryptich · Author: Larner · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 11
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:22:41
There have been many stories that make use of the fact that Boromir has no real experience with hobbits and is possibly the only one of the Fellowship who can make that claim. But I think that what sets Larner's drabbles apart is the fact that they manage to compact all of the first impression awkwardness. The result is a very clear and very vivid portrayal of the stereotypes that Boromir had to overcome. And I love that his point of view in all of this is very understandable. The hobbits are small, and at first glance, they don't boast the strengths of men, elves, and dwarves. But theirs is a deceptive strength that shows itself in surprising ways, and I love the fact that Aragorn is the one to point things out to Boromir in all the drabbles. His quiet, reasonable, and understanding voice is just what Boromir needs, and Aragorn is the perfect character to fill this role as the hobbits managed to surprise him in the beginning, too.
Title: No Common Soldier · Author: Linda Hoyland · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 436
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:24:04
I love the emotional undercurrents running behind this drabble. Both Aragorn and Denethor are composed and proper, even if Denethor is a bit cold, but beneath it all, there are challenges and subtle questions being posed here. And that's actually what makes this drabble so remarkable. Denethor only asks one question through the course of it all, but his whole demeanor screams with an army of unvoiced questions about who this Thorongil is and what he's doing here in Gondor. Every statement is, in fact, a query into Thorongil's past. For Aragorn's part, he keeps his answers simple, and every response is a parry of sorts. A dead end. It's a very short dialog, but it feels like a dance and a fencing match somehow rolled into one. I love Aragorn's final statement, as it seems to be a warning to Denethor: a question of Aragorn's own that asks Denethor if he really wants to know more about the North.
Title: Freedom · Author: Aranel Took · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 738
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:24:50
This drabble surprised me. I figured out what the creatures were after the first sentence, but then the power of the drabble took over with fantastic imagery as it described these creatures in flight and the sheer joy they must have experienced. The drabble's title came to mind, and I saw the Dark Lord's pets in a completely new light. The fact that they hesitated in the end (even if only for a moment) speaks volumes about how much they value their freedom over the open plains. I love all the references to light and the sun. It's so different from what one usually associates with creatures of Mordor, and I find myself intensely curious about the background of these creatures. Where did they come from and why do they serve Sauron? The idea that they in the end they drift while ["basking"] in faded memories is a powerful one. I can see them soaking up strength in nostalgia and warming themselves with things so far gone they are almost beyond recall.
Title: Satisfaction · Author: dancingkatz · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 765
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:25:33
The planting of the White Tree has, of course, great significance in the tale of Aragorn and his ascension to the throne. But I don't think I ever stopped to consider who might have done the actual planting. I guess I assumed Aragorn did it himself, but upon further thought, it occurs to me that he involved Gandalf and Frodo in the crowning ceremony. Why not involve Sam, someone of equal importance, in this? It makes perfect sense, and to be honest, I'm a little embarrassed for not having seen this possibility before now. It fits in every way imaginable! My hearty thanks to this little drabble for pointing out the obvious that everyone seems to have overlooked. But then, I suppose that's the lot of hobbits. And really, I don't suppose Sam would have wanted it any other way.
Title: The Folly of These Days · Author: Nancy Brooke · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 683
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:26:23
As Haldir is the only one who speaks the Common Tongue, his is the only voice we hear from Lothlorien's wardens. I love the fact that Rumil is now given a chance to share his opinions, and I love even more the fact that they're not completely in agreement with Haldir's. These are definitely suspicious times, and we get a full taste of that from Rumil. He's (very understandably) a suspicious elf, seeing shadows and threats in the unknown that Haldir seems able to overlook. But Rumil hasn't completely lose himself to suspicion, and I appreciate that there's still a degree of hope in him as he trusts that his brother will rejoin him soon on the borders.
Title: Homage · Author: Tanaqui · Genres: Character Study: General Drabbles · ID: 807
Reviewer: Thundera Tiger · 2009-10-27 04:27:39
What I love about this story is how it's able to describe events without using anything related to sight. Everything that happens is either sensed or heard or felt. No eyes here. It's too dark for that. The orcs and Shelob and Gollum might as well be blind for all the good that sight does them.
I also really enjoy how Gollum senses something of Shelob. Something more than the fact that there's an enormous bulk outside trying to decide if he'd make a nice snack. Gollum picks up very quickly on the fact that this is a "she," first of all, but more than that, he senses enough to know that a request to serve (hence the title, perhaps?) might be enough to appease the malice that knocks at his hiding place. Very interesting peak into a pivotal moment.
Title: Eau de Olórin · Author: pandemonium_213 · Genres: Humor · ID: 49
Reviewer: elfscribe · 2009-10-27 04:29:07
This short gem really rates high on the elfscribe absurdometer and I can't read it without chortling uncontrollably. Lovecraft meets Tolkien indeed. In this "quickie" ficlet, Gandalf in his Olorin incarnation finds himself drawn to watch Irmo and Namo going at it, as only two weird, godlike, shape changers can. Irreverent yes; hysterical, you bet. The descriptions of the two Valar are priceless: the perpetually stoned Master of Dreams who takes [a long drag from the pipe he always carried with him, inhaling the burning resin of poppies, and then exhaling a narcotic fog], something very Greek in that idea, and then Namo, [Judge of the Dead, his dark robes sucking all light into their folds]. The sudden metamorphosis and ensuing coupling that both arouses and horrifies Olorin is over the top silly. I loved that Olorin's eau de tobaccy gives him away. [The writhing mound of flesh in the glade below froze, and a few of the erect protuberances wilted.] Snicker! ["Glaaki, what's that smell?" ] LOL. I also loved Olorin hiding behind Nienna's skirts and her fountain of tears. A good bit of the humor comes from Pandemonium's formidable use of language. I would pick out my favorite lines but in doing so, I found I was reproducing the whole piece. I enjoyed this ficlet for its creativity, and snark, and certainly a bit of irreverence is good for the soul. Thanks for the Jackson Pollocked screen, Pande, although, after reading about all those dripping protuberances, I may have to wash my eyes out with bleach.
Title: The Good, the Bad, and the Queen · Author: Robinka · Races: Elves: House of Finwë · ID: 127
Reviewer: Larner · 2009-10-27 06:14:56
Maitimo's warning was given long before the need to act upon it was made manifest. I can so appreciate the reluctance shown by Elwe to welcome these, and his anger at the empty page of letter presented to him. That Maitimo should use this ruse does appear beyond the bounds of insult!
As for Maitimo's response to the queen, and the final scene--it is a matter to raise a fury to see that evil vengeance taken. A vile deed in the end.
Well paced indeed,
Title: My Opinion of an Elf · Author: Dis Thrainsdotter · Genres: Ficlets · ID: 660
Reviewer: Larner · 2009-10-27 06:28:13
Well, with this we can begin to appreciate the antagonism that the thirteen Dwarves of the quest of Erebor and their offspring built up toward Thranduil of Mirkwood, and how memories of the confrontations added to the distrust felt later between Gloin's son and that of Thranduil.
Most illustrative of the mutual suspicion, as well as the growing appreciation felt by the Dwarves toward Bilbo as their companion and burglar.
Very good characterzations!
Title: Yet Another Thing That Never Happened to Daeron Greyvale · Author: dancingkatz · Genres: Alternate Universe: Gondor · ID: 447
Reviewer: Larner · 2009-10-27 06:38:03
A sad thing that you don't have more reviews for this, for it is a good tale, well told, of too common a situation--the son who through no fault of his own receives little respect from his father while doing all he can to prove himself.
A tragic might-have-been, this one--one in which we see a microcosm of the lack of communication reflected in the Citadel.
Title: A Choice of Love and Life · Author: juno_magic · Genres: Drama: Elrond and Family · ID: 56
Reviewer: Larner · 2009-10-27 06:48:02
A most interesting AU tale this, as Elrond has known a second marriage, this time to a mortal woman, and again must choose his destiny.
And what a choice he has been given, to love twice and lose one to violence and the second to mortal death.
Sad and yet life-affirming at the same time. I must recommend this one,
Title: Love In A Cold Climate · Author: Tanaqui · Genres: Romance: Drabbles · ID: 748
Reviewer: Larner · 2009-10-27 06:56:13
The climate hinted at in the title given this pair of drabbles is more political than it is physical, I am certain. I loved seeing the attraction Valacar finds in an unaffected northern lady compared to the often shallow nature of the folk of his own land.
Again, Tanaqui gives us a delightful pair of jewels, well polished, that this time show us an incident from the less well known periods of Gondorian history, the time that lead to the Kinstrife.
Very well done, and highly recommended.